Atreca, Inc (NASDAQ: BCEL) witnessed a slight gain in its stock price moving into mid-market Thursday trading. BCEL stock saw a small spike in the morning before abruptly retracing, currently holding onto daily gains of 0.5%.
A key driver of the short movement was today’s announcement that Atreca will be entering a licensing agreement with the Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute for the development of a ground-breaking malaria antibody.
BCEL stock has been stuck in a downwards trend for some time, yet a partnership with the Gates MRI is undoubtedly promising. The agreement has been made following findings regarding the disruptive new MAM01/ATRC-501 monoclonal antibody – a powerful new treatment for the prevention of malaria.
The Gates MRI will take over the development of the antibody and will retain commercial rights in GAVI-eligible countries in malaria-endemic regions. Atreca will hold onto commercial rights in the U.S, Europe, and parts of Asia.
Atreca has also received the green light from Roth Capital analyst Tony Butler, who argued a bullish outlook regardless of commercial limitation in the US and Europe – stating the main market opportunity would be for travel to malaria-endemic regions; a first for mainstream modern travel. Although this is a ground-breaking partnership for the treatment of malaria, the likelihood is that it could take a long time to have any effect on the tourism market. Butler issued a price target of $30 for BCEL stock in the coming years – with a current price of $5.28, will Atreca deliver?
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Nigel has been in the regulated financial services industry for nearly a decade, has previously owned a financial brokerage and has written many times for sites relating to personal finance and trading.